State of the Nation Address 2014 | Western Cape Government

State of the Nation Address 2014

(The Government of South Africa)

The President of the Republic of South Africa, Mr Jacob Zuma delivered his sixth State of the Nation Address to Parliament on Thursday, 13 February 2014, at 19:00.

President Zuma delivered his speech in the evening so that more people were able to follow proceedings and be involved in government’s plans for the nation. The event was broadcast live on the internet, television and radio.

The State of the Nation Address will be debated in Parliament on 18 and 19 February 2014, and the President’s reply to the debate will also be broadcast live on 20 February 2014.

Read the President's State of the Nation Addresses

What is the State of the Nation Address?

  • The State of the Nation Address is an annual address to the nation by the President of the Republic of South Africa.  It is usually held on the day of the annual opening of Parliament.
  • The President delivers the State of the Nation Address to a joint sitting of both Houses of Parliament - the National Assembly (NA) and the National Council of Provinces (NCOP).
  • The State of the Nation Address focuses on the current political and socio-economic state of the nation, highlighting the achievements and challenges experienced over the past year and presents the programme for the year ahead.
  • The President assesses our country’s domestic and foreign situation and sets out the direction that should be taken to improve efforts to achieve a better life for South Africans.
  • The State of the Nation Address is a state event and it is a key event on our country’s Parliamentary and political calendar.
  • It is one of the occasional events where you find the three arms of state, namely the executive (represented by the President, Deputy President and Ministers), the judiciary (represented by the country's Chief Justice and the Judge Presidents) and the legislature (represented by the Members of Parliament), coming together in one place.
  • The State of the Nation Address also represents members of the public.

When Does It Take Place?

The State of the Nation is customarily held in February. As 2014 is an election year, there will be a second address some time after the national and provincial elections on 7 May. The first address marks the final term of the outgoing Parliament and the second one after the elections, acknowledges the newly elected President and the establishment of the new Parliament,  as this will be South Africa's fifth democratic national assembly, in its 20th year of freedom.

What is the Theme for 2014?

The State of the Nation’s theme for this year is “20 Years of a Democratic Parliament” which reflects a milestone in the country’s democracy. The theme aims to capture the essence of Parliament’s focus in exercising its responsibilities.

How Can the Public Participate?

  • Members of the public are invited to participate in the ceremony as invited guests of Parliament.
  • South African citizens from across the country make up the Civil and Junior Guards of Honour.
  • The Civil Guard of Honour, including ordinary South Africans, welcomes the President and his guests to Parliament.
  • The Junior Guard of Honour is drawn from schools around the country and represents the country's youth.
  • Eminent South Africans usually represent individuals from all provinces and are invited to be part of the activities. They are the people who have shown an exceptional involvement to the country.

Road Closures around Parliament

In conformity with the ceremony of state, roads in areas close to the Parliament buildings in Cape Town are provisionally closed with temporary parking restrictions between 11 February and 14 February 2014. Find more details on how to plan your route around the City: Road Closures for Opening of Parliament.

More Information

For more information about all the facts on the arrangement of key events on the day of the State of the Nation Address, the address will be streamed live on the Parliament website ( and the Parliament’s YouTube channel (, broadcast live on television and radio,  screened on big screens in all provinces and published on Parliament’s social media platforms. Proceedings related to the address will be also broadcast on the Parliament TV Channel #408 on DSTV.

Watch President Jacob Zuma's State of the Nation Address Live

The content on this page was last updated on 15 March 2014